Former Chattanooga jail sergeant indicted on misconduct, theft charges

Former Chattanooga jail sergeant indicted on misconduct, theft charges

February 21st, 2013 by Beth Burger in Local Regional News

Former Hamilton County Jail sergeant, Wanda Henry Smith

Photo by Ben Benton/Times Free Press.

A Hamilton County corrections sergeant who resigned after she was linked to the use of an inmate's food stamps was indicted by the Hamilton County grand jury.

Former Sgt. Wanda Smith is charged with official misconduct, a felony, and theft of property under $500, a misdemeanor, documents show.

Smith, who worked at the sheriff's office for 12 years, reportedly took inmate Greg Sciance's food stamps card, changed the PIN number and used it at local stores.

Sciance said eight purchases were made on his card while he was in jail and the PIN number was changed by someone using his Social Security number. His card was missing from his wallet when he was released after serving time for violating his probation on a theft charge.

When Sciance was released, he was eating meals at the Community Kitchen and waiting for a new card to be issued.

Seven of the eight purchases were made in Dunlap, Tenn., where Smith lives. A total of $370.51 was charged to the card at stores including Walmart, Dollar General and Dollar Tree.

Smith's salary in 2011 was $39,098, according to records.

She is set to appear March 1 before Criminal Court Judge Barry Steelman.